17 September, 2007

What's In A Name ??

Well, I’m swimming in a sea of tags right now. To take stock, at last count, to list the tags (that I'm yet to do), I’ve been tagged by

ChoxBox and Moppet’s Mom to list out five of my OCDs (Gawd – you think I’m going to stop at five !!!)

Boo to list out my favourite Indian Authors.

CeeKay to list out “What I admire most in people”.

JLT – with the Thinking Blogger tag.

Well, get around to these tags, I shall, in due course.

Like the saying goes – “Better late than never”.

But the tag that has really caught my fancy – and not surprisingly enough – the one I’ve not been tagged for – is the one with giving our babies and children all sorts of names.

We’ve been pulling our kids’ legs ever since they’ve been able to recognize that they are having their legs pulled. If they get exasperated with us in the process, well ........ so much the better. May they grow really tall !!!!

When Appu was born, being the first grandchild on both sides of the family, there was indeed much fanfare. And the usual nicks like Kunju, kunjukutti, Chella Kutti, SonaPapa, Sweetie Pie, Sugar Plum and the like were bestowed upon her. And to give credence to my sweet tooth – there have been innumerable times when I’ve called her something as whacky as GubbuJamun, Sonpapdi, ChikkiChikki, Lochogolla, Dubbudumundi (god alone knows what this means – this must have been during one of those “off the cuff” naming sessions).

It was just a question of time before her mad parents took stock of the situation, decided that the nicknames assigned were a little too sweet and logical for their taste, got hold of her and started to confer titles on her.

We had named her our very own "ShoePolish" – what with her tendency to pull any given footwear within her reach and quite literally get it to “spit and shine”.

Also during her toddler years, she used to do this monkey dance whenever the Falguni Pathak CD was playing and she used to be egged on by her loony parents who used to pelt her rather vociferously with a multitude of “Naach Jhamoore Naach”. And there used to be a lot of laughter and hand clapping – so much so that the little tyke did not realise that “naach jhamoore naach” is used, for the most part, to refer to a dancing monkey.

Then the little human that was our daughter started to speak. Illegibly at first – but speak she did. And this opened up a whole new vista for us, as far as assigning nicks was concerned.

Her first attempts at speaking brought forth something like “Aashomay Kinkaayoo”. To everything and anything we asked her – her reply would be Aashomay. For that matter when I had taken her for her admission interview at the kindergarten, the principal asked her if she wanted a book to read and she immediately piped up “Aashomay Aashomay” And the principal, in all of her infinite wisdom, smiled and said “Oh – she’s speaking her mother tongue”. And there I was, struggling to contain the mirth and laughter that threatened to erupt rather dangerously at any given moment. It had taken me all my self-control and then some to give the principal a smile and just leave it at that.
Till date, my B-I-L, while speaking to me, refers to Appu as "Aashomay Kinkaayoo".

Whenever she would get hurt – it could be something as simple as a mosquito bite – she would say “ouch patla” and so for a while “ouch patla” she was.

Other names that we had coined were rather chaste ones like “roly poly”, “jelly belly”, “Appu Tubby” (what with her fascination for the Teletubbies), chakkapazham (jackfruit).

We started to call her “Appu Star” (when she was so taken in with the rhyme Twinkle Twinkle little Star which soon mutated into “Appu Thaaath” (Cos that’s how she pronounced the word star).

Then we had this full time helper who used to call her "Abarnan". She never used to mind it then, what with the innocence that one associates with children under five years of age but now - if at all we need to get on her nerves (as though we don't do that often enough) - we know just what to do - call her Abarnan. It gets to her like nothing else does !!

Then along came Abhay and gave Appu a break from the naming ceremonies that her loopy parents used to bestow upon her and upon her alone.

As far as us, the batty parents were concerned, hee haa haw, we now had one more person on whom we could unleash our linguistic acumen, as far as coining nicknames went.

Abhay too has had his share of fairly chaste nicknames like Kuttan, Abhaykutti, chinjukutti, sonapapa, kunjupapa, sonaraja, chickpea etc…..

When he was a baby – a couple of months old – we fooled around with a picture of his – unleashing artistic tendencies gave rise to a mustache – a small, eeny weeny mustache.

Things started to get interesting when this little lock of hair right in the middle and front of his head started to have a mind of its own. No matter what was tried, this little lock of hair would not – I repeat – would not flatten itself onto his scalp. It would just go Booooiiinggg like a spring and curl up. Therefrom arose Abhay’s nick “Springroll”.

And it certatinly looks like this “nicknaming gene” which we have, I’m sure, bequeathed to our kids, is an active one in Abhay. How else could he have named his bottom - Annie and Clarabelle ??

During his first year of kindergarten, his name was changed to that of a girl by the supervisor at their school. "AaaaBhaaaaa" - her voice used to resonate and she used to sport a smile to match. A smile so very ingratiating and victorious as though she'd just climbed all the way to the top of Mount Everest. She probably thought she'd finally pronounced one Indian name right !!! And I used to wince in discomfort each and every time she called out his name. To tell her how to pronounce his name and more importantly, to get her to pronounce his name correctly - felt like I was banging my head on a wall.

And now that they are both grown up enough, things are just getting better for the nutty adults that they have for parents.

Together, they have shared nicknames like Tom and Jerry, Calvin and Hobbes, Timon and Pumbaa – which are the more sane ones.

A few months back we used to call them Sushi and Sashimi. Abhay even used to respond to me calling him “Sashiiiiimiiiii” and pat used to come the reply “Yeess Mummmeeee”.

By far the best, is what we were calling them a couple of weeks back when we needed to call them both together - “lost and found”.

When I mentioned in my earlier post that we have more than our share of nutty characters at home – I was not referring to Abhay alone !!!

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14 voice(s) said so:

DotMom said...

sushi and sahimi are HILARIOUS!!!!

Kodi's Mom said...

omg! why did I not tag you for this! I should have known your 'quacky sense of humor' would have revealed some gems...love it, love it every bit! lost and found!!! ROFL!

Just Like That said...

Loved this post. :-D
Think you guys excelled with Appu. LOL at Shoepolish How typical! and how mean of you guys!
Abhay certainly has inherited your genes! A & C. LOL!

That teacher's victorious Aaabhaaaa is hilarious. Lost and found is so cute.

WhatsInAName said...

LOL :)
Absolutely original names !!!

Moppet's Mom said...

LOL! The shared nicks are the best!

Swati said...

Hahahhah..Gauri is creative as ever ..even with the Nick names :D


Sunita said...

'lost and found' - he he he ...the best was Sushi and sahimi followed by yes mumeeee ...hillarious :).

GettingThereNow said...

I loved "Lost and Found" :D Very original! Not to say that other nicks aren't.

Parul said...

Hello, I am new to your blog. Followed the trail of all you guys who wrote about nicks...some real gems, I must say!!

Will be back :D

rbdans said...

ROFL! Every one of them is hilarious! Naach Jhamoore Naach tops my list!

mnamma said...

Sushi and Sashimi are my faves! ROFL on the eeny weeny mustache and spring roll!awesome post as always :) BTW you have been tagged again :) This one should be easy to list your dreams :)

utbtkids said...

Spring roll??? Good one!

Poppins said...

I vote for Sushi and Sashimi. This tag is the awesomest !

choxbox said...

LOL! you guys take the cake for creativity!